International Sugar Journal

Naturally sourced cyan blue could replace synthetic blue dye used in the food industry [Full subscriber]

an international team of researchers, leveraging synthetic biology and computational protein design tools, have developed a long-sought naturally derived cyan blue colourant sourced from red cabbage anthocyanin pigments that may offer an alternative to the synthetically-produced industry standard blue dye, although more testing is needed to determine the compound’s safety.

Read more …

Extending enzymes lifespan through metabolic engineering would drive productivity [Full subscriber]

The continuous replacement of enzymes and other proteins appropriates up to half the maintenance energy budget in microorganisms and plants. High enzyme replacement rates, therefore, cut the productivity of biosystems ranging from microbial fermentation to crops. Enzyme engineering via synthetic biology to extend its life is proposed by researchers from the University of Florida, Argonne National Laboratory, The University of Chicago and the University of Western, whereby they also present a new benchmark for evaluating the durability of any enzyme.

Read more …

New synthetic biology tools paves way for complex plant engineering [Full subscriber]

Agricultural biotechnology strategies often require the precise regulation of multiple genes to effectively modify complex plant traits. However, most efforts are hindered by a lack of characterized tools that allow for reliable and targeted expression of transgenes. Now, researchers at Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI) in the USA have developed a new set of synthetic biology tools that could unlock advanced plant engineering.

Read more …

Speeding up metabolic engineering with machine learning [Full subscriber]

Synthetic biology allows us to bioengineer cells to synthesize novel valuable molecules such as renewable biofuels or anticancer drugs. However, traditional synthetic biology approaches involve ad-hoc engineering practices, which lead to long development times. Now, researchers at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have created a new tool that adapts machine learning algorithms to the needs of synthetic biology, dramatically reducing the time spent engineering drugs and chemicals.

Read more …

Bioengineered microbes facilitate the production of isoprenoids [Full subscriber]

Now, researchers at the University of South Florida have engineered microorganisms for synthesizing isoprenoids.

Read more …

E. coli engineered to synthesise terpenes [Registered]

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed an artificial enzymatic pathway for synthesizing isoprenoids, or terpenes, in bioengineered E. coli.

Read more …

Rewiring plant defence genes to resist disease attack [Registered]

Plants can be genetically rewired to resist the devastating effects of disease – significantly reducing crop waste worldwide – according to new research into synthetic biology.

Read more …

Researchers engineer artificial cells that harnesses photosynthesis to perform designer reactions [Registered]

In the quest to build an artificial cell, there are two approaches: The first, re-engineer the genomic software of a living cell. The second, focuses on cellular hardware, building simple, cell-like structures from the ground up that mimic the function of living cells. One of the biggest challenges in this second approach is mimicking the intricate chemical and biological reactions required for cells to perform complex behaviours.

Read more …

SimPath licenses ORNL’s novel synthetic biology system [Registered]

The biotech start-up SimPath has licensed a novel cloning system developed by the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) that generates and assembles the biological building blocks necessary to synthetically bioengineer new medicines and fuels.

Read more …

Deinove targets cosmetics sector, drops interest in biofuels [Registered]

After biofuels and carotenoids, the French biotech start-up Deinove is now moving forward on the cosmetics front. Its engineered microbes can produce a number of high-value chemicals for skin care, and Deinove plans to bring them to market until the end of 2018.

Read more …